trial, which took place during Alexander's expedition. In the former conspiracy Darius did not believe the informer who revealed the conspiracy among his staff, and, as a consequence, he lost his life. In the latter case Philotas did not inform the king about a conspiracy he had heard of, and Alexander only escaped danger thanks to knowledge about it which he received from another informer. The failure of Philotas to inform the king of the plot may partly be explained by his father's previous false warning of a plot by Philip the Acarnanian to poison Alexander. These parallels have so far been rather overlooked in Alexander scholarship, and the purpose of this article is to examine them. These resemblances furthermore re-open the question of which sources were available to Curtius, when reporting the last weeks of Darius III, and it is to this question we first turn.
Quintus Curtius Rufus' narrative of the last weeks of Darius III is believed to be untrustworthy in many respects. Some of the
events leading to Bessus' coup d’ état are held to be no more than literary fiction. For example the meeting of the Persian commanders at Ecbatana is considered to be one of the least plausible episodes. Modern commentator, however, make a favorable exception for the role of Patron the Phocian , a mercenary commander who revealed the conspiracy of Bessus and Nabarzanes to Darius, and who is sometimes supposed to be one of the authors responsible for the picture of Alexander's campaign we get from the Persian camp, one of the persons behind the so-called mercenaries’ source. It would be only reasonable to assume that Patron the Phocian plays a key role in Curtius' account because his report formed the key source utilized by that author.